The Creepy, Sexist Undertones of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”

“The answer is no (But baby it's cold outside).”

You ought to think twice before singing the words to “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” If you take a second to actually listen to the lyrics, you’ll realize the song is a little problematic, and by a little, we mean a lot.

Written by Frank Loesser in 1944, the Academy Award-winning record has been a staple Christmas tune for decades. Every artist worth his salt has covered the song, from Frank Sinatra and Michael Buble to John Legend. But it’s not 1944 anymore, and those lyrics seriously won’t pass anyone’s standards today.

The song became the center of controversy last year when a radio station dared put its foot down and stopped playing the song. Some listeners supported the move, calling the song sexist and implying of date rape, while others rejected the attempt at “political correctness” amid the #MeToo movement.

Call us millennial snowflakes, but there’s no denying the outright creepy wording of these lyrics. Just look at some of these lines:


“Say what's in this drink?

(No cabs to be had out there)”

“I ought to say no, no, no sir

(Mind if move in closer?)”

“At least I'm gonna say that I tried

(What's the sense of hurtin' my pride?)”

“I really can't stay

(Baby don't hold out)”

“Ah, you're very pushy you know?

(I like to think of it as opportunistic)”

“The answer is no

(But baby it's cold outside)”

Yikes. If that doesn’t sound alarm bells, we don’t know what does.

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Anri Ichimura
Staff Writer, Esquire Philippines
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